After hauling the 50-pound bag of gourmet food preferred by Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle to the car Sunday, I was informed by my dear wife Karen that I was getting dropped off at home before so she could tackle the supermarket stop all by her lonesome.
Something about special ingredients for a surprise anniversary dinner.
So I suffered through the second half of my Jets getting pummeled by the Buffalo Bills and caught the sight of Karen darting to the back porch with her goodie bag before I hauled the regular weekly goods from her car to the kitchen.
I did not peek on Monday, our anniversary day, while she was away at the office at SMG. I was too busy writing, and had a business meeting downtown for another freelance gig that’s going to start within the next week or 10 days to boot.
When she got home, Karen informed me that the kitchen was off limits for one hour. From my living room recliner, I sniffed delicious aromas. If I were a guessing man, I told her 30 minutes in, I’d guess chicken parmigiana, a favorite of mine.
My dear wife continued talking about her day, cooking away, not taking the bait.
And then she called me into the kitchen, and I was told to look behind our reusable shopping bags on the table.
There sat a platter that held the Cones o’ Shrimp, what I call my order when we visit Bubba Gump’s, the franchise restaurant named after the Tom Hanks movie of much fame in which his title character Forrest Gump became a shrimper in the hometown of late Army buddy Bubba Gump and … you know the story. I love the shrimp served three ways: cocktail, coconut and tempura, with a side of french fries and dipping sauces of traditional Bubba’s cocktail, Finger Lickin’ Remoulade orange marmalade, and Delta Dunkin’ sweet and spicy.
We visit Bubba Gump’s with our group of cruise ship friends on the night before the big boat pulls out from port, whenever there’s one in the city of departure. The tradition has held in Fort Lauderdale, Long Beach and Baltimore.
They returned to Fort Lauderdale for a sequel this October, but I had to miss the vacation because I was working the 40-hour-per job assigned through the temp service, hoping to be hired on fulltime by the company, and gave up my spot in the cabin to one of our dear friends. Then the job was pulled. But I wouldn’t take the spot back. In any case, Karen and our dear friends planned my special Bubba Gump’s meal the night they were eating there. Karen went with Diane, our friend who got my spot in the cabin, and they found the cookbook that included the recipes for the shrimp and dipping sauces in the gift shop. Brenda and JoAnn worked the waitress to get four of the cones to take with them, so I could be served my shrimp in the real thing.
Believe me, my shrimp three ways and fries pictured above, cooked for me with love by my dear wife Karen, tasted as good as those served up my three trips to those Bubba Gump’s franchises. Better. She ate her version off a regular plate. as we shared a great and memorable anniversary dinner.
Has a significant other ever cooked a special surprise meal for you, and if so, what was it? Have you ever eaten at a Bubba Gump’s restaurant, and if so, in what city and what did you order? What’s your favorite way to order shrimp?